Other literary forms
George Meredith wrote more than one dozen novels, including The Ordeal of Richard Feverel (1859), The Egoist: A Comedy in Narrative (1879), and Diana of the Crossways (1885). His novels attack egoism, or excessive self-importance, and sentimentality, or unfounded pride in fine sensibility. The characters and situations presented in Meredith’s novels are fictions, but they are often drawn, sometimes closely, from real people and actual incidents. Meredith’s novels have been praised for their descriptions of society and their characterizations, especially of women, and criticized for their excessive elaboration of incident and background and for their highly artificial style, which many readers find both tedious and distracting. Meredith, whose novels explore a vein of comedy marked by rueful self-recognition, articulated his ideas on comedy in On the Idea of Comedy and the Uses of the Comic Spirit (1877).